Suits: Here's Why Mike Ross Left the Show After Season 7

By Sam Hargrave Posted:
Mike Ross in Suits, show main characters in background

Patrick J. Adams' Suits mainstay Mike Ross left the legal drama with the Season 7 finale alongside his on-screen wife, Meghan Markle's Rachel Zane.

Alongside the legendary Harvey Specter, Mike was among the leads of Suits from the beginning as he went on a journey from struggling pothead to a fraudulent attorney to a married man preparing to lead a legitimate legal clinic.

Why Did Mike Ross Leave Suits After Season 7 

Patrick J. Adams as Mike Ross in Suits Season 7
USA Network

The Hollywood Reporter revealed in November 2017 during the halfway break for Suits Season 7 that Patrick J. Adams and Meghan Markle were eyeing an exit ahead of Season 8.

The former was said to be "looking to pursue other creative avenues" while the latter was preparing to marry British royal Prince Harry (read more about Meghan Markle leaving Suits here).

Adams opened up to The Hollywood Reporter about his Mike Ross exit ahead of the premiere of Season 7's second half. He explained how he realized during the break that it would be his final season after he began to question "what's the story left to tell" which prompted him to close the book on Mike:

"Halfway through it. As we were starting to talk about renegotiating contracts [for season eight and beyond], I took a moment. Everybody was going full steam ahead and I stopped and said, 'We need to think about this because this is more of my time and more of my life — and what’s the story left to tell?'"

The actor talked through Mike's Suits journey from a "brilliant burnout pothead" to a fully qualified lawyer who can "do whatever he can imagine:"

"When I looked at the work I was doing, Mike would become a full-fledged, certified, legal on paper lawyer. That’s a long way from when we met him and he was this brilliant burnout pothead with no real prospects. I thought we’d come so far and now Mike is going to work to be a lawyer and he’s engaged to the woman of his dreams and he’s got the means and opportunity to do whatever he can imagine."

He explained his aversion to Mike becoming just "another lawyer on television" if the story dragged out much longer, so he began planning his exit with the writers:

"I had this voice in my head that said that we’ve told his story and if he hangs out longer, Mike is just going to be another lawyer on television. That didn’t feel right for him. It didn’t feel right for where I was at in my life, either. I started having conversations with Aaron and we both decided [Adams leaving] made sense, as sad and scary as it was. It just felt like it was the way to go."

The outlet also asked if he was scared of disappointing Suits fans with his exit after seven seasons in a co-leading role. Adams told how these scenarios also come with a fear of "[letting] someone down" but noted how the show was moving forward without him anyway:

"There’s always this fear that you’ve somehow let down or will let down the millions of fans over the world when, really, your reason for doing it is to honor the work that you’ve done over the past seven years. Just because something stops for me doesn’t mean that there isn’t more for the show itself to do. It’s just not right for me to be a part of it from here on out."

Mike Ross and Rachel Zane had their final outing as main cast members with the Suits Season 7 finale after being series regulars from the very beginning. 

After Mike put his fraudulent life behind him in Season 6 and became a fully qualified lawyer, Season 7 left him questioning his career trajectory. Mike continued pushing away from the world of corporate law to help the little guy, often assisting with a local legal clinic and taking on pro bono cases at the firm.

After Season 7, Mike had married the woman of his dreams (Rachel) and the couple was setting out for a move to Seattle. The move to the Emerald City came in an attempt to start a fresh life together where they would be running a legal clinic and taking on Fortune 500 companies.

Why Did Mike Ross Return in Suits Season 9?

Having departed Suits after his wedding to Rachel Zane in the Season 7 finale, Mike Ross returned to the show in Season 9. His guest role saw him going up against Harvey and other firm members in court before teaming up to reclaim it from the control of the New York Bar Association's Faye Richardson.

Patrick J. Adams spoke to Entertainment Tonight about coming back to Suits from the set of Season 9 in June 2019. The actor explained how his return was "just an excuse to come and see everybody" and to be involved in the final chapters:

"Ultimately, it was about coming back. It was about, 'We'd love to get the band back together,' basically. Do one last trip around the world. It was as simple as that. For me, it was just an excuse to come and see everybody and really be here for the final moment."

Adams continued to open up about the desire he had to "be there with everybody" for all the final moments, compared to his original departure when the show was poised to live on without him:

"When I left the first time, it was just me. I was saying goodbye and I knew this thing would continue after me. Now I know that every time we'd shoot a last scene in the bullpen or in Harvey's office or in Donna's office or wherever, I'll get to be there for that. Then, when we say 'cut' for the final time and 'Suits' is over and that's it and it's in the past. I know I'll get to be there with everybody when it happens. For me, that's a huge gift."

Suits is streaming now on Netflix.

Read more about Suits:

- About The Author: Sam Hargrave
Sam Hargrave is the Associate Editor at The Direct. He joined the team as a gaming writer in 2020 before later expanding into writing for all areas of The Direct and taking on further responsibilities such as editorial tasks and image creation.